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so what if you change your ways, but it takes a lifetime?
October 8, 2004
11:17 pm
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brendalee
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Thanks for the info mzrella - and for the validation. I needed that!
Growing up I was always told that it was "all in my head" - hell, might be true. I do hate how depression is confused with a lack of personal weakness - lke there must be something wrong with you if you just can't "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" I would love to see some celebrity bring light to this real illness - seems that's the only way society can justify something like this.....sometimes I picture myself with bandages around my head with the letters PTSD or something written across it....because we would never undermine someone in a wheelchair or with a cast on as someone weak who just can't seem to "pull themselves out of it" you know? Brenda

October 9, 2004
12:46 am
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brendalee-

Yeah, it really makes you want to pull further into your shell when people accuse you of "wanting to be miserable" or something like that... it's kind of like trying to pull yourself up but then someone bashes you in the head and knocks you down for being honest and expressing how you really feel inside.

There's really almost a hidden defeatest attitude in asserting that one is "not trying." It's truly unfair and ignorant, these misconceptions about depression are so prevelant in our society, and this is very unfortunate.

True, some individuals make less of an effort than others to cope with their condition. Coping is great- and essential for the functioning and survival of the depressive person. But coping and medication don't make it go away. The mind of the chemically depressed person is always vulnerable to many stress factors, some unavoidable. And the emotional state of the individual is perpetually under seige by mood swings.

A person might appear not to be doing much to "help themselves" when they have bipolor or other disorders, but sometimes merely sustaining the battle takes all the effort one can summon.

Personally, I am high fuctioning, but I have times like that. I've known many people who struggle to live productive lives, but just can't blend in with the mainstream. They are honest, compliant with their meds, but their biochemistry gets the best of them. Maybe they have frequent panic attacks, psychotic breaks and so on. Should we tell them it's their fault? There are all different colors in the spectrum.

You are right on with the comparison to other disabilities, though I have heard similar statements get reactions from people that were not no understanding.

-ella

October 9, 2004
1:06 am
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brendalee
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You know - there really needs to be a movie that addresses this in a way that people can understand. I feel deep down that it is my calling to write such a movie - only I have to be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel first....or maybe not? I dunno. American cinema is so predictible - what about writing a film that left the audience in the lurch....much like life? Hmmmmm. Foreign films to me seem OK in taking this risk. I think the closest thing that american cinema has come upon this was in American Beauty with Kevin Spacey.

October 9, 2004
7:18 am
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dire straits
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what are some of your experiences with long term therapy?

My experiences with therapy have been frustrating. Got to the point of trusting a few therapists and spilling my guts to them only for them to inform me that they would not be with the clinic much longer b/c they were getting a better position elsewhere(where they would charge their clients more),that they were moving,etc... "But hey, Sally Jones is a great therapist!Let my connect you with her!" Ultimately,I become very resentful of being passed around to clueless counselors and having to start from scratch with the new person... My trust of these "professionals" has been damaged and I am presently not seeing a therapist.

October 9, 2004
12:22 pm
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Cici
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I hope you don't mind me butting in. I've thought about this a lot throughout my life. I've felt hollow and empty throughout my life, and even sought answers through examining philosophy starting when I was about 8 years old, with the classic philosophers. When I was about 15 my mother lent me a book called Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl. He remains my favorte psychologist (he was in a jewish internment camp, Auschwitz, for several years and lost his beloved wife and his life's work to the Nazis, yet held absolutely NO animosity or anger toward the Nazis or the german people in general. he will always be my idol).

I eventually quit therapy after about 7 years and decided to persue personal growth through buddhism. the idea of the four noble truths really rang true with me, the first of them being "all life is suffering".

I knew that to be true, and the pathway to ending suffering has helped me in many many many many many ways. A lot of people I guess seek relief through spirituality. I was born and raised catholic, and although I have even had deeply spiritual experiences where I sincerely felt the presence of divinity, I felt that god was telling me that the only way to alleviate my suffering was not to rely on the divine, but to explore this through my own efforts.

according to my faith, the whole process of going through pain and anguish is part of the learning process that is life.

if we were born perfect, with no efforts to make, or obstacles (internal or external), what would motivate us to travel down the pathways of life and experience and grow? We would be content to stay as we are!!!

I feel like my mind deceives me, and my twisted ways of thinking hurt me and make me lose my way. But life, I think, is about learning.

I read that one main difference between those who are depressed and those who are more upbeat, is that those with depression have a more accurate view of themselves and the world around them.

October 9, 2004
12:42 pm
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dire straits
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Nam Myoho Renge Kyo

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